Pensacola weddings are enticing for a variety of reasons. This Florida panhandle city enjoys more than 300 sunny days a year on average, so chances are good that couples having an outdoor ceremony won't have a rain out. If you prefer taking weather out of the equation, choosing an indoor venue is always an option too, thanks in part to area churches like the historic Christ Church in downtown Pensacola. It's not all about the ceremony when it comes to Pensacola weddings, however. Being that this is an excellent vacation destination, the honeymoon can begin right away.
One of the things that makes Pensacola weddings so attractive is the fact that there is no shortage of beautiful beaches to select from in the area. At these beaches, bright white sand meets emerald-green water, creating a sumptuous backdrop for wedding ceremonies. A number of beachfront hotels and resorts can help couples make that special day an event to remember, and since they have wedding staffs that can take care of everything, there is little for the bride and groom to worry about. The Portofino Island Resort & Spa and the Hilton Pensacola Beach Gulf Front Hotel are examples of upscale lodging establishments that can be ideal for Pensacola beach weddings. Both are found in the popular tourist hangout of Pensacola Beach.
Couples who are interested in Pensacola beach weddings will also want to keep the area vacation rentals in mind. The Pensacola vacation rentals include large beachfront homes that lend themselves well to private events of all kinds. Just a short walk is all that is required to get to the beach for the main ceremony, and afterwards, everyone can return to the house for a catered reception. If you just need a beach to get married on, in Pensacola Beach you don't need any permission to have a ceremony along the eight mile public beach. You will need to apply at least 30 days in advance if you wish to use the Pavilion at Casino Beach or the Band Shell that can be found along the Quietwater Boardwalk.
Many Pensacola weddings understandably take place on the beach. The area beaches aren't the only venues to choose from, however. In addition to the area churches, couples might consider attractions such as historic Fort Pickens or the Pensacola Lighthouse. After the ceremony, the bride, groom, and guests can venture off to any number of reception venues to celebrate the night away. The options are diverse when it comes to Pensacola weddings, so couples are encouraged to get creative.
Perhaps the best thing about getting married in places such as Pensacola is the fact that the honeymoon can begin right after the reception is over. No getting on a plane and dealing with the hassles of travel. Of course, you can also choose to get married elsewhere and then head down to Pensacola for some honeymoon fun. On Pensacola honeymoons, couples can enjoy a wide variety of activities, such as getting a couple's massage at one of the area spas, having a picnic on a quiet beach, and taking a sunset cruise aboard a yacht.
Pensacola wedding planners, whether they be affiliated with a hotel or not, can help couples arrange everything from the venue to the photographer. For couples who prefer doing most or all of the planning themselves, applying for a license through a Florida county office is necessary. There is an Escambia County office at 190 Government Street in Pensacola, and you can find a Santa Rosa County service center at 5819 Gulf Breeze Boulevard in Gulf Breeze. Within ten days of getting married, the marriage license must be returned to the county for processing. Chaplains often handle this for couples.
A marriage license in Florida is valid for 60 days. Documents that you will need to send in or provide in person in order to get your license include birth certificates and photo IDs, and anyone who has previously been married will need to supply proof of divorce. There is no waiting period to get married for non-Florida residents once the license is granted. Florida residents, on the other hand, have to complete a state sanctioned marriage course. If they don't, they must wait at least three days to get married after the license is granted.